high-speed vehicle pursuits can have fatal outcomes.
After a long year of suffering for the family of Tamon Robinson, a Brooklyn man who died in a collision with a police car, New York City has finally agreed to a $2 million wrongful death settlement.
Tamon Robinson died in April 2012 during a police chase in Canarsie, Brooklyn. Officers said they had caught the 23-year-old digging up paving stones.
The police accident report said the vehicle was stopped when Robinson ran into it, fell and hit his head. Witnesses disputed that.
“They hit him,” described a witness, who says she watched the the whole thing go down, from her 8th floor apartment window. “He flew up and he came down. They backed the car up, and they told him to get up. People were yelling out their windows screaming at the cops, ‘We saw what you did.’”
Both NYPD and NYFD at first described Robinson’s injuries as non-life threatening, but on the day of the incident, according to reported eye-witnesses, the police at the scene pulled Robinson from under the car, yelling “Wake up! Wake up!” before bouncing him off the hood of the car.
The city’s law department called it a “fair and reasonable settlement.” Fair and reasonable will never we enough for the grieving family in this tragic loss.
And to add insult to injury, in October 2012, city officials apologized for sending a $700 bill to the family for damage to the police vehicle.
Robinson’s mother, Laverne Dobbinson, tells the Daily News (http://nydn.us/1qZUptG ) that she still wants action taken against the officers.
The Brooklyn district attorney’s office continues to investigate. In he end justice for Tamon Robinson prevails. Hopefully the family can now start to recover.
Paul Ajlouny, New York car accident lawyer, wrongful death attorney reminds us of an incident involving a NYPD car chase just this year. A car pursued by NYPD, on 79th Street and Park Avenue in Manhattan, through the Upper West Side, Central Park and Upper East Side, striking a pedestrian and sending people around fleeing in terror.
The struck pedestrian suffered minor injuries, including bruising and scraps to his left leg and right arm. The question that we all have to think about is when should police not be in pursuit?
According to Mr. Ajlouny, “On a national average, crashes from police chases and police response calls kill more than one person a day, and one-third of the people killed are innocent bystanders.” The NYPD needs to figure out when a chase is NOT a good idea. High risk police pursuits take innocent lives.
According to a report in 2010 by the FBI:
Police pursuit give light to some frightening statistics. First, the majority of police pursuits involve a stop for a traffic violation. Second, one person dies every day as a result of a police pursuit. On average, from 1994 through 1998, one law enforcement officer was killed every 11 weeks in a pursuit, and 1 percent of all U.S. law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty lost their lives in vehicle pursuits. Innocent third parties who just happened to be in the way constitute 42 percent of persons killed or injured in police pursuits. Further, 1 out of every 100 high-speed pursuits results in a fatality.
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One of the dilemmas faced by Police officers is whether or not to continue a suspect chase. What are the consequences of proceeding or ending a dangerous pursuit? In the circumstance of Tamon Robinson a reasonable approach was obviously not made now that NYC police have offered the family a 2 million dollar settlement for their tragic loss. How badly did you want to catch a guy that committed a petty crime — at what cost? Does the need to chase and apprehend out weigh public safety? What do you think NYC?